Glycosyltransferase family14 (GT14) belongs to the glycosyltransferase (GT) superfamily that plays important roles in the biosynthesis of cell walls, the most abundant source of cellulosic biomass for bioethanol production. It has been hypothesized that DUF266 proteins are a new class of GTs related to GT14. In this study, we identified 62 GT14 and 106 DUF266 genes (named GT14-like herein) in Arabidopsis, Oryza, Populus, Sorghum and Vitis. Our phylogenetic analysis separated GT14 and GT14-like genes into two distinct clades, which were further divided into eight and five groups, respectively. Similarities in protein domain, 3D structure and gene expression were uncovered between the two phylogenetic clades, supporting the hypothesis that GT14 and GT14-like genes belong to one family. Therefore, we proposed a new family name, GT14/GT14-like family that combines both subfamilies. Variation in gene expression and protein subcellular localization within the GT14-like subfamily were greater than those within the GT14 subfamily. One-half Of the Arabidopsis and Populus GT14/GT14-like genes were found to be preferentially expressed in stem/xylem, indicating that they are likely involved in cell wall biosynthesis. This study provided new insights into the evolution and functional diversification of the GT14/GT14-like family genes. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.